Wednesday, February 17, 2010

How to make a phone call

At the stoplight, I checked my side mirror at the car behind me, as I always do, and felt as though I were gazing into a window on the past. The driver sat in her car sobbing, mopping up her tears with a white Kleenex and saying what appeared to be "Oh, my God!" if my lipreading skills are to be trusted. My heart broke for her as I empathetically remembered over and over doing the same thing. Was she alone? I peered as hard as I could in the rearview mirror and right side mirror, but in the dark, rainy night could only make out the shadow of a male shape. How could she be so clear and he so..not? I watched her cry and cry in the two minutes we sat at the light, and after it changed I drove toward the ramp to I-5 South. She kept going straight, and I blamed him. If the cause for her distress were anything other than him, she would not have been driving...he would have made her pull over and either comforted her immediately or taken over driving until she was no longer so upset.

I kept thinking about that woman long after I got home, wondering why the tears, how she happened to have a Kleenex when I never do, and what happened next. Was I right in my assumption that it was the man's fault? In my experience, it always is. From my dad, to the Swine, to Steve, to all the men who hurt the women that wrote to me with their stories when I before I erased this blog because of the Swine back in 2006, I have tale after tale of male-induced horror stories. There are good men, I know, just why so far and few.

But that wasn't meant to be the point of my story. The point of my story is, yet again, that I am happy about the new chapter. The one where I'm not the girl sobbing beside an impassive male or because of a awful betraying male.

In other news, yesterday I had a moment that was hilarious to me:

We just moved into a new place in a town just south of Bellevue, Newcastle, it's called. And we now have a home phone, where before I only had a cellphone. Because Audrey is now old enough to stay home for short periods of time by herself, I want to make sure she can contact me or the police in an emergency. I called her downstairs, so I could show her where the phone was and the list of numbers. "Do you know how to use it," I asked. "No, what do you do?" she said picking up the phone. "Dial my number," I told her, and she punched in the corresponding keys "How do you make it call?" she asked staring at the handset. I laughed..."It's already ringing." "It is??" and she hung the phone up to her ear, "Oh yeah, it is." We heard my cell phone ringing from my room upstairs. "See, that's all it takes." "How do I make it hang up?" she said looking at the handset again. "You just put it down," I answered. "Really?" she said incredulously putting the phone back in its cradle. And with that I taught my daughter how to use an old-fashioned land line...where you don't need a call or end key. How awesome would it have been if we had a rotary phone?